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Kejriwal reacts to Chandigarh Mayor's resignation amid rigging inquiry

Written by  Annesha Barua -- February 19th 2024 06:03 PM
Kejriwal reacts to Chandigarh Mayor's resignation amid rigging inquiry

Kejriwal reacts to Chandigarh Mayor's resignation amid rigging inquiry

PTC News Desk: Amidst allegations of election manipulation, Chandigarh Mayor Manoj Sonkar's resignation has stirred controversy, with Arvind Kejriwal, the Chief Minister of Delhi, asserting that it exposes electoral irregularities. Kejriwal emphasised that Sonkar's decision to step down indicates foul play in the electoral process.

The resignation occurred on the eve of a Supreme Court hearing concerning a petition alleging tampering in the mayoral elections. Sonkar's victory on January 30, which saw him defeat Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) candidate Kuldeep Kumar, was met with scrutiny due to the invalidation of eight votes, sparking accusations of manipulation from the opposition.

Chandigarh mayoral election AAP and Congress accused the presiding officer, Anil Masih, of manipulating ballots during the counting process..jpg

In a significant blow to the AAP, three of its councillors - Poonam Devi, Neha, and Gurcharan Kala - switched allegiance to the BJP, bolstering the latter's position in the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation to 17 members. With the support of one Shiromani Akali Dal councillor and ex-officio voting rights for BJP MP Kirron Kher, the party's total strength reached 19, further solidifying its dominance.

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Consequently, the AAP, along with its ally Congress, faced a diminished presence, with only 10 and seven councillors, respectively. The aftermath of the election has been marred by chaos, as allegations of cheating and electoral malpractice surfaced. The opposition, particularly the AAP and Congress councillors, accused the BJP of flouting electoral procedures, citing a video purportedly showing presiding officer Anil Masih tampering with ballot papers, submitted to the Supreme Court. However, the BJP vehemently refuted these claims.

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(Inputs from agencies)



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